Wednesday, August 4, 2010

A Forgettable World Cup Experience

Thabiso Sihlali

I knew that the world cup was coming to South Africa for six years. I was in primary school when it was announced but didn’t feel any hype around it at the time.

Time passed and so did the years and the six years building up to 2010 seemed very normal to me. It did not feel like South Africa was to host a significant event on international importance.

Tickets went on sale and I too received some, but I still didn’t think I was about to be part of an experience that would change some people’s lives.

All that led to the night of an all important game that I would remember for the rest of my life.

It was a cold night in the Loftus Versfeld stadium where temperatures dropped below freezing point. The stadium was packed and everyone was still high on Bafana’s draw against Mexico. Everyone thought this would be in the bag. But it wasn’t to be as the host nation lost three goals to nil to Uruguay.

An hour before kickoff vuvuzelas were blowing so hard you wouldn’t hear yourself sneeze in that cold. I had so much hope that the atmosphere would last. But as the whistle to start the game was blown the stadium went dead quiet.

Then Diego Forlan of Uruguay drew the first blood with a shot out of nowhere. It felt like I was watching a golf Tournament where the crowd waiting in anticipation for Tiger Wood to make his final shot to win the US Masters. Then I thought Bafana would score and the mood would change back to the vuvuzelas that we heard before kickoff.

This dull mood lasted unfortunately. It lasted the whole game until I stood up and left the stadium as I was cold and had realised that no miracle was going to happen here. The ‘Once In Lifetime’ or ‘Part Of History’ moment ended before it even started for me.

I can surely admit it was one night to forget in terms of historical moments in my life
Nothing excited me that much about the day. That sums up my world cup experience.


  1. tjo my friend never knew you could write like thiss...
    anyway back to the Topic...i stand with you on that one, that was an embarrasment and a half...

    for me Philip was never in this country, who benefited in this country from the world cup???obviously the lil rich people....which places were revamped for the world cup???only the ones that the country thought were "good enough" for ama foreigners...

    people in the rural areas have been crying about what the government has promised them ever since U Tata took over, do not get me wrong, He did make a difference but what are the rest doing...

    people thought the world cup would bring them what they have been hoping for "proper recognition" by the world...

    i am proud of South Africa but honestly, where are we now???????

  2. That is quite an experience you had there, even I and a couple of my friends had that experience from the comfort of our living room, the excitement just died so suddenly and out of nowhere. Fifi was here!